Benches Nelson may have sat on in his Norfolk village local have been saved

The Lord Nelson in Burnham Market, pictured today without its sign. Picture: Ian Burt

The Lord Nelson in Burnham Market, pictured today without its sign. Picture: Ian Burt - Credit: Ian Burt

Brewery Greene King repossessed the Lord Nelson, in Burnham Thorpe, two weeks ago.

Priceless benches Nelson himself is believed to have sat on have been saved after a wrangle at a Norfolk pub which bears his name.

Villagers feared the settles were among items removed from the Lord Nelson, at Burnham Thorpe, before it was repossessed by brewery Greene King two weeks ago.

But a spokesman for the brewery said: 'Most of the fixtures and fittings owned by the departing tenants were removed, but not all the settles and we are now assessing the damage to those which remain with the intention of carefully restoring them. We have offered to buy the remaining fixtures and fittings that were removed and that offer remains open. We will ensure that we replace them appropriately if required to.

'Work to reopen the pub is ongoing, but this is a grade two listed building and we need to be mindful of this at all times ahead of our planned sympathetic refurbishment and relaunch. We apologise to regular customers for any inconvenience at this time and can assure them our focus is on the best possible outcome for the Lord Nelson.

'This important and historic pub is now temporarily closed and will reopen for trading as soon as possible. We are actively seeking a new licensee to take the business forward.'

Villagers have formed a friends group to campaign for the pub to re-open.

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It stands a stone's throw from Nelson's birthplace and was visited by the great seafarer whilst he was staying in the village.

The newly-formed Friends of Burnham Thorpe is looking to register the Lord Nelson as a community asset, so villagers can attempt to buy it if it ever does come onto the market.

Originally called the Plough, the pub was re-named after Nelson's victory over the French at the Battle of the Nile.

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